Police allegedly attacked in Patiala, ASI’s hand chopped off; seven arrested

A group of people on Sunday allegedly attacked police officials and cut off the hand of one of the officers at a vegetable market in Punjab’s Patiala, the police said.

Police have arrested seven accused from a Gurdwara in village Balbera, where they had taken refuge after fleeing from the scene of the incident.

“Seven fugitives, donning the robes of Nihangs, have been arrested from the Gurdwara in village Balbera. One of these was injured in the police firing and has been rushed to hospital,” said K.B.S Sidhu, Special Secretary, Punjab, in a tweet.

“The police party observed full ‘Maryada’ while entering the Gurdwara premises. There were also women and children inside, who were unharmed, and have been left secure within the Gurdwara as before,” he added.

Earlier in the morning, the group injured a few police officers and a Mandi Board official at Sanaur vegetable market in Patiala, in which an Assistant Sub-Inspector Harjeet Singh’s hand got cut off, police said. He has been taken to Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research in Chandigarh for a surgery.

“In an unfortunate incident today morning, a group of Nihangs (Sikh warriors) injured a few police officers and a Mandi Board official at Sabzi Mandi, Patiala. ASI Harjeet Singh whose hand got cut off has reached PGI Chandigarh,” said Director General of Police Dinkar Gupta.

Patiala’s Senior Superintendent of Police Mandeep Singh Sidhu said that the group of assailants, who were in a vehicle, were armed with swords and iron rods. When they reached the vegetable market they were stopped by Mandi board officials, who asked them to stand in a queue to buy vegetables, he added.

“They were not following rules of social distancing and then entered into a confrontation with Mandi Board officials. As the police officials intervened and asked for their curfew passes, the assistants attacked the police personnel with swords and rods,” said Mr. Singh.

Two other police officers apart from the ASI sustained injuries on their elbows and arms, he said.

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